Former child star Jeanette McCurdy of iCarly fame details abuse she suffered at hands of her mother and “the creator”


Former child star Jeanette McCurdy (right) alleges abuse at the hands of her her mother Debbie McCurdy (left) in her recently released memoir I’m Glad My Mom Died.

Former child actor Jennette McCurdy released her first book detailing her experience growing up in show business. The shocking content of this tell-all memoir, controversially titled I’m Glad My Mom Died, has caused a stir online among readers in relation to what the young actress underwent both on and off-screen.

McCurdy made a name for herself from the young age of 15 when she played the tough but loveable Sam Puckett on the hit Nickelodeon show iCarly. The character became a fan favorite and earned McCurdy a spinoff titled Sam & Cat with co-star Ariana Grande. Following her Nickelodeon days, the actress went on to star in the show Between; after that, McCurdy seemed to disappear from acting entirely.

Fans were disappointed to hear that McCurdy was not set to return to the screen when Paramount+ announced a reboot of iCarly in 2021. Miranda Cosgrove, who portrays Carly Shay on the show, said on Entertainment Tonight that “the door is always open” if McCurdy wanted to return for a cameo. However, online chatter on McCurdy’s memoir has made it clear why the writer chose not to join her co-stars Cosgrove, Nathan Kress, and Jerry Trainor in the reboot. 

I’m Glad My Mom Died details the abuse and mistreatment McCurdy suffered at the hands of her mother Debbie McCurdy, who died of cancer in 2013. The book also details abuses by the creator of the shows in which she starred. The book shines a light on the cruelty that child actors can be subjected to from the adults who push them into the industry.

Several fans of McCurdy were shocked to hear what she went through at such a young age, and they are longing to obtain a copy of the book and hear from McCurdy herself. Olympic Heights sophomore Lily Ames said, “I’d love to read it if I got my hands on a copy because, like many others, iCarly was my childhood, and it’s crazy to think that the entire time she was being abused.”   

In I’m Glad My Mom Died, McCurdy explains how her mother put immense pressure on her and set high expectations, describing the impact this had on her mental and physical health. The abuse progressed even to the point where the young actress struggled with eating disorders for many years. Shocking details discussed on social media included McCurdy’s mother giving her showers until she was a teenager and counting her calories. 

Some believe the title of the book to be inappropriate and offensive. However, McCurdy stands by her work. “I get that it’s attention-grabbing, but it’s also something that I mean sincerely,” she said on Good Morning America. “I think that anybody who has experienced parental abuse understands this title, and I think anybody who has a sense of humor understands this title.” McCurdy added, “I wouldn’t have written the book if my mom were alive. I would still have my identity dictated by her.”

Beyond her troubling relationship with her mother and stressful home life, in the book McCurdy opens up about her unsettling experience as a child star, especially how she was treated by the creator of the shows she was on, who are left unnamed on the pages. She describes the limitations placed on her career by “the creator,” including times in which she was told that she couldn’t participate in other movies or programs because she wasn’t allowed to miss work. 

More appalling, McCurdy details the disturbing interactions she had with “the creator,” such as being given a back massage. She also discusses the inappropriate things he made her do on set while still a minor, such as wearing a bathing suit and having to kiss another actor on-screen despite being uncomfortable with it. 

I’m Glad My Mom Died highlights the truly haunting reality behind some of the most loved childhood shows and serves as a warning of the dangers of child stardom. McCurdy revealed her strength and bravery by speaking out about her experience. Many acknowledge her recovery and support her in rebuilding her health and happiness after all that she had endured.